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NJBIA Deputy Chief Government Affairs Officer Ray Cantor released the following statement regarding the formal publishing of the final Environmental Justice rule in the New Jersey Register on Monday.

“The business community is disappointed in the adoption of the Environmental Justice rules without making any substantive changes based on comments by industry.

“Unfortunately, these regulations exceed legislative intent, are not balanced in any way, and fail to recognize the benefits good-paying jobs bring to communities and the state as a whole.

“These rules will essentially lock out any new manufacturing from coming into the state and significantly prevent the expansion of existing businesses. Even existing New Jersey manufacturers, seeking a permit renewal, may be forced to relocate out of state. The clear message is that New Jersey is not open to manufacturing and the good-paying jobs they deliver.

“These rules also prohibit new recycling facilities and even make it hard to expand these facilities. While the Legislature passes new laws intended to increase recycling rates, these rules move in the opposite direction.

“The rules even limit the ability to do environmentally beneficial public works projects.  At a time when the state has received billions of federal dollars to do public works infrastructure projects to improve the environment, the EJ rule will make it decidedly more difficult to get the money out the door.

“NJBIA supports smart environmental laws that seek to improve the lives of the people in disadvantaged communities. Unfortunately, these rules do little to improve the lives of the people they intend to protect, while ensuring New Jersey will be extremely challenged to define itself as a manufacturing state.”